Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Anarkali's Grave Found in Walled City of Lahore

It will come as a surprise to many that the timeless love story of Anarkali we all have grown up hearing and adopted by many a filmmaker is largely a work of fiction. It was an 'afsana' or an imagined version of events that may have taken place, according to the writer, since there is little or no mention of any woman named Anarkali in official Mughal records.

So who was Anarkali, if there ever was an Anarkali. Anarkali's story is one of the biggest mysteries of Lahore.

The alleged grave of Anarkali inside Civil Secretariat Lahore. As pointed earlier, if Anarkali did not exist, who lies buried inside the grave. On the side of the grave is a persian couplet inscribed by none other than Jahangir himself which says:

I would give thanks to the Lord till judgement day;
Oh if i could only see the face of my beloved once more;
Majnu Saleem Akbar

Yes, you read that right, 'Majnu' Saleem Akbar. It is indeed unique for an undisputed Mughal emperor of Indian subcontinent to refer to himself as 'Majnu' or love struck while writing a couplet for a woman when their harems consisted of hundreds of most beautiful women. Plus the tone of the couplet indicates a deep sense of longing pointing towards unfulfilled love. We may never know who rests inside that grave. But one thing is for sure. Whoever it is, was no ordinary woman.

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